The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

A Novel

Joyce, Rachel

Book - 2012
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry
Harold Fry is convinced that he must deliver a letter to an old love in order to save her, meeting various characters along the way and reminiscing about the events of his past and people he has known, as he tries to find peace and acceptance.

Publisher: New York : Random House, c2012
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 0812993292
Branch Call Number: F Joy


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Mar 18, 2015
  • DeborahGD rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

The best novel I've read in a long time. Thought provoking and humorous -- but I'm someone who loves Barbara Pym's humorous novels, someone I've found is not everyone's favorite despite the high regard in which she is held. I could not put this novel down.

Feb 24, 2015
  • TheresaAJ rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

The February 2015 selection of the Willa Cather Book Club is part Canterbury Tales, part mid-life crisis. Harold Fry goes out one afternoon to mail a letter to a former colleague who is dying of cancer. Before he reaches the post box, he decides to walk from southwest England to northeast England to "save Queenie". Out of shape and ill-equipped, Harold faces many trials along the way...

Feb 14, 2015
  • lilyofthevalley3 rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

Part of me wants to give this book a better review but it came across as depressing when it was highly recommended as "humourous fiction". I had to force myself to finish it.

Jan 20, 2015
  • JMFreads rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This was truly an amazing journey. I love this story!

Jan 08, 2015
  • JennM_0 rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

I loved this book! It was a little slow, but keep with it, the ending ties it all together and makes it more than worth it!

Dec 29, 2014
  • sdv rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

I truly enjoyed this book more than I expected. There were some touching moments and definitely some to think about, too. This story about an unusual journey and sorting through ones life is a simple yet amazing read!

Dec 02, 2014
  • molmil8 rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

This book will take you on a trip in your reading chair.. The story is deceptively simple but speaks to all the stories that are inside the people around you.

Oct 22, 2014
  • SopwithCamel rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

Wouldn't want to give away too much and ruin the reader's experience of an unfolding story, buuuuut there's a twist, and there's also a span to skim through because it interferes with the whole point of Harold's journey. You'll know it when it starts.

Aug 18, 2014
  • cheadlebeagle rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

This is a light summer read and was quite touching in places and thought prevoking. I'm glad I read it but I am not as swept away by it as a lot of people; it's a bit long too.

Jul 18, 2014

A good although rather slow moving story about Harold Fry making sense and coming to terms with his marriage, his depressed son and his life in general through a long unplanned walk to visit an ill friend.. It always held my interest but there is nothing earth shaking in this novel---it's just a good read.

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Nov 15, 2014

The world was made up of people putting one foot in front of the other; and a life might appear ordinary simply because the person living it had been doing so for a long time.

Nov 29, 2013
  • BPTADiscusses rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

They believed in him. They had looked at him in his yachting shoes, and listened to what he said, and they had made a decision in their hearts and minds to ignore the evidence and to imagine something bigger and something infinitely more beautiful than the obvious.

Dec 27, 2012
  • ghreads rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

“He understood that in walking to atone for the mistakes he had made, it was also his journey to accept the strangeness of others. As a passerby, he was in a place where everything, not only the land, was open. People would feel free to talk, and he was free to listen. To carry a little of them as he went. He had neglected so many things that he owed this small piece of generosity to Queenie and the past.”

Dec 27, 2012
  • ghreads rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

“It must be the same all over England. People were buying milk, or filling their cars with petrol, or even posting letters. And what no one else knew was the appalling weight of the thing they were carrying inside. The inhuman effort it took sometimes to be normal, and a part of things that appeared both easy and everyday. The loneliness of that.”


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May 21, 2014
  • hbrewer rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

hbrewer thinks this title is suitable for 40 years and over

Mar 12, 2014
  • DanglingConversations rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

DanglingConversations thinks this title is suitable for 40 years and over


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Feb 27, 2013
  • APlazek rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

This quiet novel from a new author feels very reserved and British (and it is). Harold Fry receives a letter from an old co-worker who he has not spoken with in over 20 years informing hm that she has terminal cancer. Upon reading the letter Harold knows he must espond so he crafts a letter and heads out to post it, but along the way meets a girl working in a gas station and explains about the letter. The girl tellls about her aunt who had cancer and says, "You have to believe.... trusting what you don't know and going for it." Something from that conversation touches him and Harold decides he must walk to the Queenie Hennessy -- if he walks she will not die befroe he gets there. The story is mysterious and sparse yet incredibly inspiring and heartwarming. Slowly along the way the story of Harold's relationship with his wife unfolds and we learn about their son, David in bits and pieces. It is not until the end that everything comes together and it is a sad picture of how much time can be wasted with misunderstanding and hurt, yet hope remains.


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